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Ukrainian Politicians 'Sold' To Highest Bidders


The doll of Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko fetched about $8.

The doll of Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko fetched about $8.

KYIV -- "Politicians for sale! Get your politician here!"

These are the slogans a youth organization in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv used at an auction of dolls depicting some of the country's leading politicians, RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service reports.

Andriy Ben, chairman of the Youth National Congress, told RFE/RL that the auction was intended to point out that politicians offer themselves to the highest bidder and use state funds to promote themselves.

"These traditional Ukrainian dolls are made by winding cloth and cords and they are symbols of purity and transparency, qualities that are sadly lacking in Ukrainian politics," Ben said.

The doll of Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko fetched 51 hryvnia (about $8) at the auction, while that of opposition leader Viktor Yanukovych pulled in 36 hryvnia.

The Youth National Congress held the action to mark the opening of campaigning for the country's January 17 presidential election.
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